These Matcha Madeleines are a green tea twist of the classic French Madeleines. They're light, fluffy, and simple to make!
Madeleines are well-known for being sophisticated little shell-shaped sponge cakes. But although they may seem delicate, they're really not that difficult to nail! I've been perfecting this Matcha Madeleines recipe for a few weeks now because I believe all desserts should have their own "matcha" version for green tea lovers.
These green tea madeleines are light, airy, and melt in your mouth! The step-by-step recipe is fairly simple to follow and is a must-try for matcha and madeleine lovers alike. As a bonus, these delicate madeleines can be dipped in melted dark chocolate and topped with crushed hazelnuts or simply dusted with powdered sugar. They make a sophisticated dessert or tea-time treat!
What are Madeleines?
Madeleines are small, delicate sponge cakes, originally from France, which are distinctively shell-shaped on one side and "humped"on the other. The batter is made mainly using butter, eggs, sugar and flour. This is then chilled and finally baked for a few minutes in a shell-shaped mold. Madeleines are served plain and warm, dipped in chocolate and/or topped with nuts, or dusted with icing sugar. Their texture is buttery, light, and fluffy.
Ingredients and Variations
In order to make madeleines, you will first and foremost need a madeleine pan.
Butter - You will need to melt the butter for this recipe. Make sure to use good-quality butter as this is the base for the perfect sponge. Ideally use unsalted butter.
Egg - This needs to be beaten very well with the sugar. I highly suggest using a stand-mixer for this recipe as you will need to beat the egg for around 10 minutes. This will ensure the perfect madeleine texture.
Flour - You can use all-purpose or cake flour. For accuracy, measure your ingredients using digital kitchen scales rather than cups.
Sugar - Granulated or caster sugar both work well here.
Honey - Additional natural sweetener. You can also use maple syrup or good-quality flavored honey.
Matcha - Use premium, high-quality matcha powder. It doesn't need to be the most expensive matcha out there (ceremonial-grade matcha tends to be the most expensive), but avoid using culinary-grade matcha as this tends to lose its color and brown once baked.
Vanilla Extract - flavor enhancer. This is optional.
Baking Powder - leavening agent
Salt - to balance the sweetness
For greasing the madeleine pan, you will need additional melted butter and flour. This will prevent the madeleines from sticking to the bottom of the pan.
For the optional topping, you will need dark (or any) chocolate of your choice, your preferred crushed nuts (I used hazelnuts) or powdered sugar.
How to Make Matcha Madeleines (Step by Step)
- Melt the butter in a microwave-safe bowl and set aside. You will need to let the butter cool down slightly before starting your batter. Do not use hot melted butter.
- In a medium-sized bowl, sift and mix your dry ingredients - flour, matcha, salt, and baking powder. Set aside.
- Place egg and sugar in a large mixing bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix on medium-high speed for 8-10 minutes. The final mixture should be pale and thick. Do not compromise on time here as the final madeleine texture highly depends on proper beating of egg and sugar.
- Add the vanilla extract and honey and mix for a few seconds to incorporate.
- Fold in the dry ingredients using a spatula (do not use the mixer for this step). Then, fold in the melted butter using a spatula and incorporate into the batter. Do not overmix.
- Cover and chill the batter for at least 30 minutes (to 1 hour). In the meantime, prepare and chill the madeleine pan.
- Brush madeleine molds with some melted butter using a pastry brush. Then, lightly dust the molds with flour, shaking off excess.
- Transfer the greased and floured madeleine pan to a refrigerator and chill for at least 20 minutes.
- In the meantime, preheat the oven to 190°C (375F).
- Divide the madeleine batter between 12 molds. You'll need to fill ⅔ to ¾ of the way (not to the top).
Note, if you have extra batter or you will be reusing the mold for a second batch, you will need to re-grease, dust, and re-chill the madeleine pan.
- Bake the madeleines for 9-12 minutes. When done, the madeleines should be puffed up, golden brown at the edges, and hunched at the top.
- Transfer to a cooling rack. Cool completely if glazing with chocolate or serve warm with a dusting of powdered sugar.
- To glaze: melt chocolate in the microwave and coarsely crush hazelnuts. Dip madeleines in melted chocolate, transfer to wire rack, and top with crushed nuts. Transfer to refrigerator until chocolate hardens and sets.
Tips for the Best Madeleines
- Beat the eggs and sugar for at least 8 minutes - this will ensure the perfect fluffy texture.
- Use room-temperature ingredients (especially eggs!)
- Do not forget to grease and chill the madeleine pan. This can be done whilst the madeleine batter is resting (in the refrigerator) and will prevent the madeleines from sticking to the mold.
- Make sure to chill the batter before baking - for at least 30 minutes.
Madeleines are best served fresh and on the same day of baking. Store leftover madeleines (without topping) in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 4 days. Madeleines with chocolate topping should be stored in the refrigerator, especially during warm days.
You can also freeze madeleines in a freezer-safe container for up to 1 month. Thaw at room-temperature overnight before serving.
Ceremonial grade matcha will provide the "nicest" vibrant green end result in baking. However, this is also the most expensive option. If ceremonial grade is not an option, I suggest using good-quality premium grade matcha powder, which will also give you a nice green result.
With culinary grade matcha, the beautiful vibrant green colours are lost after baking and shift more towards the brown side. I do not recommend culinary grade matcha in your baking for this reason.
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- 70 g unsalted butter melted (approx. ⅓ cup)
- 1 medium-sized egg
- 50 g granulated sugar (¼ cup)
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
- 1 tsp. honey
- 62 g flour all-purpose or cake (½ cup)
- 2 tsp. high-quality matcha
- ¼ tsp. baking powder
- ¼ tsp. salt
To Grease Madeleine Pan
- 2 tsp. unsalted butter melted
- 3 tsp. flour
- 50 g dark chocolate melted
- 6-7 hazelnuts coarsely crushed
- 2 tsp. powdered sugar
- Place butter in a small microwave-safe bowl and heat on high until melted. Set aside until cooled.
- Sift and mix flour, salt, baking powder, and matcha and set aside.
- Place egg and sugar in a bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix on medium-high speed for 8-10 minutes. Mixture should be thick and pale.
- Add vanilla extract and honey and mix for another 30 seconds.
- Fold in dry ingredients using a spatula. Do not overmix. Then, fold in melted butter and incorporate into batter.
- Cover and chill batter for 30 minutes to 1 hour.
- To grease the madeleine pan, melt 2 tsp. butter and use a pastry brush to lightly brush the madeleine molds with melted butter. Then, lightly dust them with some flour.
- Transfer greased and dusted madeleine mold pan to a refrigerator and chill for at least 20 minutes.
- In the meantime, preheat the oven to 190°C (375F)
- Divide madeleine batter between 12 molds (fill ⅔-¾ of the mold). NOTE: If you have extra batter or you will be reusing the mold for a second batch, you will need to re-grease, dust, and re-chill the madeleine pan.
- Bake madeleines for 9-12 minutes until puffed up and hunched at the top and edges turn slightly golden brown.
- Transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely if coating with chocolate. Otherwise, lightly dust with powdered sugar.
- Topping: melt chocolate in microwave-safe bowl and coarsely crush hazelnuts. Dip madeleines in melted chocolate, then sprinkle with crushed hazelnuts. Transfer to a wire rack and chill until chocolate has set.